Working in a hot atmosphere can cause heat cramps Heat cramps are painful muscle cramps that cause discomfort and pain in individuals. Though it is not a medical emergency; however, can be a hindrance for that particular time. Heat cramps are usually experienced during exercise or working in a hot environment or may begin few hours later. Heat cramps usually involve muscles that are fatigued by heavy work such as calves, thighs, and shoulders. So imagine when you experience cramp, cramp usually last for few minutes but cause extreme discomfort leaving you in a great pain. If you’re a person who works or do a lot of activities in a hot environment are likely to experience heat cramps, especially during the first few days of an activity you’re used to. You’re also at risk if you sweat a lot during exercise and drink large amounts of water or other fluids that lack salt. The exact cause of heat cramps is not known. But it is usually related to electrolyte problems. Electrolytes include various essential minerals such as sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. They undergo chemical changes in your tissues. An imbalance can cause heat cramps. Since sweat contains a large amount of sodium and drinking fluids with insufficient sodium content can cause imbalance and hence, is the problem of heat cramps. You’ll experience painful, involuntary, intermittent cramps for a brief period of time and they usually go away on their own. You can feel that your muscles have tightened up. If you or anyone in your family or children experience heat cramps; remove him or her from the current activity he or she is doing and seek for the shade. Let the child sip or drink fluids with electrolytes continuously until the symptoms do not go away. Let the child continue sipping after cramps stop until the child has the urge to urinate. You may gently massage the affected muscles with warm oil and relax for some time while the pain goes away. You may try ice bags on the affected muscles. Stretching the affected muscles sometimes does work greatly. Stop any activities for some time while you’re completely relieved from the pain. Adding salt to foods and drinking sports drinks or fluids containing electrolytes can benefit to alleviate the pain. Prevention of heat cramps can be possible. It takes some time to get used to it when you work in a hot atmosphere. Make sure that you continue to have adequate salt-fluid supplement at work.